Support Systems

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Support Systems

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Johanna Rothman shared this article and it made me think a bit. Her writing often does that to me 😉 Consider the following two things:

  1. Identifying who my support system is and,

  2. The notion of asking for and giving help.

Upon personal reflection, I realized a couple of uncomfortable truths about myself.

First, I have a limited support system. Of course, my family is (and has always been) there for me. That includes my wonderful wife Diane and my four grown children. I’m still waiting for the grandchildren to join my “support crowd”.

And I have a few close friends that provide quite a lot of support. And a few close colleagues.

But, given the nature of my profession and associated network, I realized that I hadn’t let very many folks into my world in order to support me.

That led to my second realization…I’m very good at helping others.

For example, I’ve been doing pro bono agile coaching for more than 10 years for anyone who is looking to develop themselves in this area. When I use the tag-line that I’m a “coach of coaches”, I’m not kidding. I do a lot in this area and giving back gives me great joy.

That being said, I don’t receive very well. I don’t often ask for help and, when it’s offered, I struggle to receive it. I don’t know exactly why, but it’s a challenge for me.

(Now that I call it out, it’s something that I need to work on with my coach…)

Johanna’s article really crystallized this for me. And it made me think about becoming much more intentional about asking for and receiving help as a means of increasing my support system.

You see, we all need support at one time or another. I just think we need to be able to give it as well as receive it. So, for 2020, one of my goals to become a much better “requestor” and a better “receiver”.

And anyone in my support system, please help me to become a better “receiver”.

Stay agile my friends,



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